Use this Super Bowl themed game with youth as an introduction to the idea of the game of football as a metaphor for living the victorious Christian life.
What You Need
- Newsprint or long strip of paper – Classified ads work great
- A marker for writing on the paper
- Football themed decorations
Create a miniature football field in the center of the room.
- Cut some newsprint into 11 long strips 3 or four inches wide (small print classified ads work best. Cut from a double newspaper spread so that you get the longest strips possible.)
- You can usually use wide masking tape to replace the paper strips, but be sure to check it first to make sure it does no damage on carpet or floor tiles.
- In the center of each strip of paper or stretch of masking tape, label the yard lines. You should have one strip for each of the following:
—– GOAL —–
—– 10 —–
—– 20 —–
—– 30 —–
—– 40 —–
—– 50 —–
—– 40 —–
—– 30 —–
—– 20 —–
—– 10 —–
—– GOAL —–
- Lay the strips of paper out on the floor to create a miniature football field as shown above.
Create a football
- Cut a brown paper bag, or piece of brown cardboard into the shape of a football. Use a marker to draw the laces onto the football shape so it looks more like a football.
- You can also use a small football easily found in a toy store. They are usually about the size of a large orange.
What to do
- Choose a quiz of at least 50 questions. It can be questions from recent Bible lessons or simply Bible Trivia.
- Split the youth into two different teams and sit them on opposite at opposite ends of the football field.
- Flip a coin to see which team plays first
- Start off on the 50 yard line
- Each “Play” involves asking a youth from the team a question to be answered. You may wish to limit each youth on the team to answering only one question to insure that all youth participate.
- A correct answer advances the team 10 yards. An incorrect answer causes the team to lose 5 yards. If the student is unsure of the answer they may “pass” to another player on the team that has not answered a question yet. One pass per question is allowed.
- The winner is the first team to reach the opponent’s endzone (A touchdown). If the game is taking too long, the team closest to the endzone wins.
- For more fun, decorate the room with football logos and come dresses as the referee with a whistle.
Instead of a quiz you could use the following ideas:
- Football Charades
Place a bunch of football related words on folded slips of paper and put them in a bowl. Divide into two teams. A player from the team pics a slip from the bowl, takes a peak at it, then must act out the word for his or her team. If the team hasn’t guessed the word in one minute, the opposing team can make one guess and try to steal the ball. When a charade is correctly guessed the team advances 5 yards. There is an attached list of Superbowl / Football related words you can use for the Charades. Get more details on how to play charades here
You can also play charades using the names of various football teams. You can find some of the football teams here
- Forbidden Word
Divide into two teams and Every time someone from the opposing team says the word football the ball is advanced for your team.
Football terms (for Charades)
AFL, announcer, arm guard, arm pad, artificial turf, assistant coach, astroturf, audible, back, backfield, ball boy, ballcarrier, bench, blitz, block, bomb, bowl game, carries, center, cheerleader, chest protector, cleats, clipping, clock, clothesline, coach, coin toss, completion, conferences, cornerback, count, cup, dead ball, defense, defensive back, defensive end, defensive halfback, defensive holding, defensive line, defensive lineman, defensive tackle, delay of game, dime back, double team, down, draft, draw, drive, drop kick, elbow pad, eleven, eligible receiver, end, end zone, extra point, face guard, face mask, fair catch, fake, false start, fan, field, field goal, field of play, field position, first and ten, first down, flag, flanker, football, football helmet, football player, football tee, formation, forward pass, foul, four-point stance, free kick, free safety, freeze, fullback, fumble, goal line, goalpost, gridiron, grounding, guard, hail mary, half time, halfback, handoff, hang time, hash marks, head coach, Heisman trophy, hike, hip pad, holding, home-field advantage, huddle, i formation, illegal motion, incomplete pass, instant replay, intentional grounding, interception, interference, jersey, kick, kick return, kicker, kickoff, knee pad, laces, lateral pass, line, line judge, line of scrimmage, linebacker, lineman, live ball, lob, loose ball, man-to-man coverage, mascot, middle guard, midfield, NFL, nickel back, nose guard, nose tackle, off sides, off-season, offense, offensive backfield, offensive holding, offensive line, officials, offside, onside kick, open receiver, overtime, pass, pass defender, pass interference, pass pattern, pass protection, passing game, penalty, personal foul, pick, pigskin, piling on, pistol formation, placekick, placekicker, play, play clock, playbook, playoffs, point spread, possession, post-season, preseason, punt, punt return, punter, quarter, quarterback, quarterback sneak, receiver, reception, red flag, redshirt, referee, regular season, return, reverse, roll, rookie, roster, roughing the kicker, roughing the passer, running back, running game, running into the kicker, rush, rushing, sack, safety, score, scramble, screen, screen pass, scrimmage, scrimmage line, season, set, shotgun, shoulder pad, sideline, snap, special teams, spike, spiral, split end, spot, stadium, stance, starter, steal, stiff arm, straight arm, strong safety, substitution, super bowl, sweep, t-formation, tackle, tailback, take a knee, TD, team, thigh pad, three-point conversion, three-point stance, tie, tight end, time out, too many men on the field, touchback, touchdown, trap, trick play, turnover, umpire, uniforms, unnecessary roughness, unsportsmanlike conduct, uprights, wide receiver, wing back, wishbone, formation, wrist pad, yard line, yellow flag
TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
- How much do you know about football? Whos the football expert?
- Do you have to know everything about the game to enjoy the football game?
- Are there people who dont really care about football but get caught up in the excitement of the event? Why?
- Do you need to know everything about the team players to enjoy the game?
- What is it about the superbowl that gets people excited?
- Are you as excited about God as you are about the Superbowl? Why or why not?
MAKE IT SPIRITUAL
- Equipment – Ephesians 6:10-18 – In football terms, Paul, the team coach gives his team a pre-game pep talk, reminding them to put on their gear – the hip pads of truth, shoulder pads of righteousness, cleats of preparation, the face mask of faith, the helmet of salvation, and play according to the rules of the Playbook.” Then they have a team huddle to seek perseverance and strength to achieve victory over their opponent.
- Fans – Some people are in the game and others are simply watching. Some are wearing the uniform, merely to be seen by others, but not on the field. They are watching, yet not doing. (James 1:22; Matthew 23:1-25)
- Rules – We must compete according to the rules so that we are not disqualified for the prize (2 Tim. 2:5; 1 John 2:3-4; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 1 Corinthians 10:23)
- Goals – Philippians 3:14 – Press on toward the Goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward.
- Perseverance – James 1:2-4 – You’ll go up against many tests and when you persevere through these tests you will emerge victorious. (Ephesians 6:13; Hebrews 10:36)
- Cheering – We must cheer one another on. (I Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 10:23-25; Hebrews 12:1-2)
- The Clock is ticking down – Are you ready? Make the most of your time. (Ephesians 5:15-16; Colossians 4:5-6; 1 Corinthians 9:26-27; 1 Peter 3:15; 2 Timothy 4:2)
For more in depth scriptural applications check out last year’s superbowl lesson here:
MAKE IT PRACTICAL
- In what ways is the church (or this group) similar to a football team?
(We are united as a team, we have a goal (the great commission), we work together to achieve a goal, there is opposition, sometimes unexpected things happen, sometimes we fumble in our tasks, sometimes we gain ground, while other times we lose ground, We have a coach (God), sometimes we have to defend against the opposition, time is short, there are people watching us (spectators), not everyone plays fair, there are penalties for mistakes, we must wear protective gear (armor of God), we have different positions on the team, there are people who are playing and there are people on the sidelines, we need a game plan, etc.)
MAKE IT PERSONAL
- Are you part of the team (A Christian?) Why or why not?
- If you are, what is your position(role) in the team?
- Are you on the sidelines or playing the game?
- Are you a team player?
- Are you focused on the goal?
- What can you begin doing to help the team more effectively overcome the opposition and achieve the goals ahead?
1 Corinthians 1:25-27
“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”
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